Maha Gorton

Harper's Bazaar Best Dressed, Bazaar Best Dressed, Best Dressed 2017, Ounass, Ounass.com, Bentley, Maha Gorton
32, British/Egyptian

As a mother of three – Ayah, 8, and twin boys, Faisal and Zayed, 5 – and the owner of childrenswear brand Little Farasha, Maha Gorton is constantly on the move. As a result, the designer tells Bazaar that what she wears has to fit in with her busy life. “My day to day style is very practical; I’m usually in a t-shirt and jeans. It means I’m dressed ready to head to the park with the kids or to a meeting. As much as you try to maintain your own sense of self, becoming a mother does shape you. You look at the world through different eyes. In terms of style, I became far more practical with my fashion choices – my favourite white jeans and silk blouses had to be put away for some time!” Glamour, she says, is reserved for nights out. “Stepping up the style stakes is saved for the evening and my fashion choices are then influenced by where I’m going and who I am going with.”

Such occasions include red carpet premieres, as Maha is married to acclaimed 35-year-old Emirati filmmaker Ali Moustafa. For these events, “Rami Al Ali, Burberry and Carolina Herrera are always my favourite designers to wear, as well as Dubai-based designer Asma Chapti Dadabhoy.” Through her many appearances, Maha says she learnt two important lessons: “Fit is incredibly important and certain fabrics simply do not work under bright lights.” She also always remembers something her mother once told her – “Never wear uncomfortable shoes because it shows on your face.”

Maha says her greatest sartorial challenge is stepping outside of her comfort zone. “I try to be more adventurous but I always end up going with the safer option,” she says candidly. Even erring on the side of caution, Maha’s style is a lesson in understated elegance, and she says that she is passionate about showcasing the beauty of modest dressing. “I’m an advocate of modest fashion and it’s wonderful to see so many brands starting to acknowledge the beauty of modesty in their designs.” This notion is something she wishes to instil in daughter Ayah as she grows up and develops her own personal style, naming Queen Rania and Sheikha Moza bint Nasser as “the perfect examples of how you can be stylish and elegant whilst at the same time being modest. My advice to my daughter is that she doesn’t have to bare all to look elegant. When it comes to skin on show, less is more.”

Maha Gorton wears top and skirt by Alexis at Ounass.com. Shoes and jewellery, her own. Photography: Richard Hall. Styling: Samah Elmeri. Words: Maddison Glendinning. make-up: Karuna at KC Makeup Hair: Blowout & Go. Location: The Green Planet

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Harper's Bazaar Best Dressed, Bazaar Best Dressed, Best Dressed 2017, Ounass, Ounass.com, Bentley, Maha Gorton